Meet The MBA Class Of 2020: Profiles In Courage



That brings up the all-important, albeit awkward, question: Do you believe the MBA is going to be worth it? Laura Botelho de Carvalho, a Brazilian consultant who chose to earn her MBA at Canada’s McGill Desautels, doesn’t downplay the risk. Students are “pausing” their careers for up to two years, costing them six figures in opportunity costs while braking their career momentum. Such decisions require conviction as much as courage. That said, the arguments against, Botelho de Carvalho asserts, miss the point of taking advantage of what she calls a “career incubator.”

“You are constantly challenging yourself, testing your limits – often out of your comfort zone – getting the most up-to-date information, networking and learning from people who have (very) diverse and impressive backgrounds. All of this effort and energy will lead you to be the best version of yourself, and the payoff will come naturally as a consequence of such large investment. Having said that, an MBA seems the perfect way to fast-track your career and help point you towards success.”

London Business School’s Nikki Gupta

LBS’ Nikki Gupta took a proactive approach to answering the ROI question. She pored over Linkedin profiles and reached out her target audience – Chiefs of Product at VC funded startups – to “plead for a 15 minute Skype call. Sure enough, Gupta came away with two priceless takeaways on the degree’s long-term value. “It was pretty clear that decades on, those that had the MBA had really benefitted from it in terms of career progression and being able to tap into a powerful network of alums,” she notes. “I knew I did not need one to get my next job, but it became clear that 10 years down the line I would have more opportunities if I did have an MBA.”


It wasn’t just pay and position that MBA alums touted, adds Cornell Johnson’s Carlos Acevedo. “Every MBA alum I spoke with before applying to business school told me not to worry about the program costs. They shared that all my calculations would leave out the most important asset of the process, which includes the experience and memories, which are priceless.”

Is an MBA worth it for the Class of 2020? While students are early in their studies, Harvard Business School’s Marrone, believes the decision comes down to answering two questions – and summoning the courage to take action if both are answered “Yes”.

“I used a few questions to help. Do you value the two years at a given school over two years at your company (or any other immediately attainable job)? Do you think you can markedly improve your trajectory through the opportunities offered at a given school? If yes to both, then it is now up to you to take advantage of the opportunities and make the MBA experience worth it.

“Healthy pressure,” he adds.

COMING THIS FALL: We will profile a dozen MBAs from 40 of the top MBA programs in the world.

Class of 2020 Full-Time MBAs

Student School Hometown Alma Mater Employer
Ever Isaac Hernandez Carnegie Mellon (Tepper) Boston, MA University of Massachusetts-Amherst Chevron
Grace Zimmerly University of Chicago (Booth) Waterford, PA Yale University New York / New Jersey High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA)
Halle Morse Columbia Business School Shaker Heights, OH Cincinnati Conservatory of Music American Repertory Theater
Thomas Stelle Cornell University (Johnson) Sag Harbor, NY Trinity College B&B Hospitality Group
Irina Titkova Dartmouth College (Tuck) Mogilev, Belarus Brooklyn College KPMG
Alexandra Herrera Flores Duke University (Fuqua) Lima, Peru Universidad del Pacifico Ligas Femeninas Futbol 7
David R. Hinshillwood Emory University (Goizueta) Cherry Hill, NJ Harvard University PrepScholar, Inc.
Michael Cox Georgetown University (McDonough) Brooklyn, NY Syracuse University New York City Mayor’s Office
Daphne Pham Harvard Business School Hanoi, Vietnam Mount Holyoke College Uber
Chen Kossover HEC Paris Rishon LeZion, Israel Tel Aviv University Meitar Liquornik Geva Leshem Tal
Ali Almein IESE Shepparton, Australia University of Melbourne WaterNSW
Jasson Muir Clarke Indiana University (Kelley) San José, Costa Rica University of Costa Rica World Animal Protection
Andrea (Andi) Frkovich London Business School Dana Point, CA Duke University U.S. Navy
Laura Botelho de Carvalho McGill (Desautels) Belo Horizonte, Brazil PUC Minas) P3N Projetos Ambientais
Georgia Cassady University of Michigan (Ross) Enterprise, AL Wake Forest University Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility
Jaime Zorrilla Sánchez de Neyra MIT (Sloan) Madrid, Spain Universidad Autonoma de Madrid Hospital Universitario 12 de Octubre
Maya Anderson North Carolina (Kenan-Flagler) Decatur, GA Harvard University Hodges-Mace
Braden Schrock Northwestern University (Kellogg) Farmington Hills, MI University of Michigan U.S. Navy
Nica Langinger New York University (Stern) Los Angeles, CA Stanford University Snapchat
Michael Wall Notre Dame (Mendoza) Scituate, MA U.S. Military Academy U.S. Army
Kory Li Rice University (Jones) Buffalo Grove, IL Washington University (St. Louis) Anheuser-Busch Inbev
Anson E. Fraser University of Texas (McCombs) Summit, NJ University of Notre Dame Envestnet
Sophia Duncan University of Toronto (Rotman) Newton, MA Wesleyan University Milton Community Youth Coalition
Katharine Hawthorne U.C. Berkeley (Haas) San Mateo, CA Stanford University Tiedemann Advisors
Amanda Sol Peralta UCLA (Anderson) Brooklyn, NY Duke University Jopwell
Tina Cook USC (Marshall) Los Angeles, CA Northern Kentucky University Chrysalis
Curtis Duke Vanderbilt University (Owen) Morristown, TN Sewanee: The University of the South U.S. Army
Carissa Sanchez University of Virginia (Darden) Three Points, AZ Yale University Arconic
Alexis Goodrich University of Washington (Foster) Mercer Island, WA University of Southern California Creative Market
Felicia Kola-Amodu Washington University (Olin) Ibadan, Nigeria Bowen University Enterprise Holdings
Julia Stock Wharton School Rio de Janeiro, Brazil Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro McKinsey & Company
Elizabeth Davidson Yale SOM Richmond, VA College of William and Mary Kiva

Meet the Class of 2020 Series

London Business School

University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School

Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management

University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business

MIT Sloan School of Management

Columbia Business School

UC-Berkeley Haas School of Business

Dartmouth College Tuck School of Business

Yale School of Mnnagement

University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business

Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business

Cornell University’s Johnson Graduate School of Management

UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School

New York University’s Stern School of Business

University of Texas-Austin McCombs School of Business

Emory’s Goizueta School of Business

Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business

Vanderbilt University Owen Graduate School of Management

Washington University’s Olin Business School

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